Welcome to Book Clubs! Lunchtime Discussions to Build Reading Motivation

Blog post on Book Clubs designed to build school reading community and students' intrinsic motivation to read.  Includes download of bookmark with options students can use to prepare for discussions.
Here's another technique we're using to build our school's reading climate and students' intrinsic motivation to read.  Like digital book commercials, we're expecting to see and hear students' excitement rise along with their spontaneous talk about books!

This week, we're beginning book clubs.  These aren't your ordinary, everyday book clubs, they are SPECIAL because students will be invited to attend during their lunch periods!  We're visiting classrooms (the principal, vice-principal, me (literacy coach), and the librarian) doing short book talks on hand-picked titles, asking students to sign up to read and discuss great books.  We're beginning with twelve copies of the titles listed below.  If we don't have enough students sign up from one class, we'll include another class.  If we have too many takers, we'll put names in a hat to draw out for the first club, then include those who were not drawn in the second round.  

We'll meet three times a week to read and discuss our books.  Our first meeting will consist of a read-aloud by the book club leader (me or other) to get everyone into the book.  We'll also set norms for the group and have a short open-ended conversation.  Then, we'll decide a reasonable amount of reading that should be done by the club members before the next meeting.  The goal will be to spend the majority of the time discussing the books when clubs meet, not reading the books during group time.

To help student's prepare for book club conversations, we'll have them keep the bookmark pictured above in their books (download here) and supply them with sticky notes for recording their thoughts.  The bookmarks are meant to provide possible options to keep readers thinking and actively engaged in their reading while helping us make our discussions as rich as they can be.
We're starting with the books listed below--they were picked based on their extreme kid-appeal.  Picture books are on the way, as are other titles.  We want to include all grade levels. 

Roller Girl 
Joey Pigza Swallowed the Key 
Dog Man
The Snoop Troop series  
The Princess in Black series 

I'll update you on how things are going, changes we make, and the effects we see.  I'm really looking forward to this special time with readers!



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